Software documentation is written text that accompanies computer software. It either explains how it operates or how to use it, and may mean different things to people in different roles.

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2answers
81 views

Referencing StackOverflow questions in comments [duplicate]

Often when coding I'll get stuck on a particularly tricky problem and will go about searching for a solution. More often than not this leads me to a StackOverflow question that provides a full or ...
55
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11answers
6k views

How should I remember what I was doing and why on a project 3 months back?

I was working on this project 3 months back, and then suddenly another urgent project appeared and I was asked to shift my attention there. Now, from tomorrow I'll be heading back to my old project ...
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2answers
84 views

How specific should be an interface about its implementation details?

Perhaps I should have picked a better title, but anyway... Basically what to do with two or more implementations that have the same public interface, but they are meant for slightly different ...
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1answer
38 views

Referencing official documentation in source-code documentation

What are your preferences for referencing official documentation (like a white paper) for an algorithm from comments in the code that implements it? I'm trying to decide between two methods, as ...
3
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2answers
156 views

How to do documentation for code and why is software (often) poorly documented?

There are some good examples of well-documented code out there, such as java api. But, a lot of code in public projects such as git and internal projects of companies is poorly documented and not very ...
2
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5answers
162 views

How viable is to create a mini documentation inside the source code

So, I work as a developer. We are a small team. The majority of the people (everyone except the project manager and the senior developer) are still in university. We have very flexible work hours, ...
3
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2answers
178 views

Is it customary for software companies to forbid code authors from taking credit for their work? do code authors have a say?

The company I work for has decided that the source code for a set of tools they make available to customers is also going to be made available to those customers. Since I am the author of that source ...
0
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1answer
114 views

Your thoughts on Best Practices for Scientific Computing? [closed]

A recent paper by Wilson et al (2014) pointed out 24 Best Practices for scientific programming. It's worth to have a look. I would like to hear opinions about these points from experienced programmers ...
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1answer
34 views

What does backup procedures and troubleshooting guidelines mean for a system

I am writing the documentation for a piece of software which I have made but I don't understand what it means in some aspects. It asks me to write about backup procedures but what exactly does this ...
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1answer
41 views

Where can I find better designed nginx documentation? [closed]

Actually I have a sub-question here:"Is Nginx official documentation opensourced?" Nginx is a good software, but I found its official documentation(http://nginx.org/en/docs/ really hard to read, ...
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0answers
15 views

Scala/SBT - Documenting Configuration Change for Releases

I'm trying to collect different ways of managing configuration across multiple environments. I have a requirement to document configuration changes for the deployment plan. Dev values are defaults in ...
-1
votes
1answer
82 views

What's the verb for “currying”? [closed]

As per Wikipedia, partial application is a process (noun) that fixes a number of arguments to a function, and currying is a technique (noun) that transforms multi-arg functions in a way that it ...
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3answers
133 views

What goes within the Architecture Overview of a Design Specification?

I have designed an management system for a medical practice and I am writing the design specification and I am kind of stumped by what to write for a section. It asks for me to write about the ...
1
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1answer
154 views

As an lone, Agile (PXP/PSP) developer what is the proper structure for a formal project post-mortem? [closed]

Question: As an lone, Agile (PXP/PSP) developer what is the proper structure for a formal project post-mortem? Scenario I'm using a PXP methodology (which is a blend of extreme programming and the ...
3
votes
2answers
98 views

How to document a file format specification [closed]

For a project, I need to work with varying types of files from some old games and related software--configuration files, saves, resource archives, and so on. The bulk of these aren't yet documented, ...
0
votes
3answers
165 views

Has there been any formal proof that documentation in general is incomplete and obsolete to a certain grade? [closed]

I'm a web developer and I'm currently once again in a situation where a partly clueless ops department requires a "complete" documentation required for technical support of our application by a ...
1
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2answers
72 views

How to write descriptive conditionals for ifs?

I've gotten into the habit of using excessively descriptive names. In addition, I've also gotten into the habit of creating the conditions for ifs like so: bool user_is_female = user.get_gender() ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

How to document the high-level structure of a Java program?

Background: My collaborators and I are writing an article for an academic journal. In the course of our research, we wrote a simulation program in Java. We want to make the simulation program freely ...
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2answers
137 views

How should I document a multi-tier application?

I have to create a documentation structure for a legacy application, and I'm not sure of how to organize it. Documentation goals: List of use-Cases Program flow for each of the use cases. ...
0
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0answers
40 views

How would you collect the ideas that needs to be discussed during time [duplicate]

What is the best way of collecting and/or keep tracking of ideas/issues that needs to be discussed in details and during the time? As an example, imagine within the team you're brainstorming about ...
0
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1answer
90 views

Documentation required for commissioned software (product) [closed]

The company I work for has commissioned a software company to produce a compliance software for several big companies. As part of our contract it is required of them to provide us with src code and ...
5
votes
4answers
157 views

Keeping documentation / manuals up-to-date in a rapidly changing project

Background I work on a relatively large project (~570 KLOC) in a relatively small team (formerly 5 developers, now 2). Large amounts of code can appear and then vanish in months; for example, a few ...
1
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2answers
116 views

How to document self explanatory setter functions? [duplicate]

Often boolean setters are pretty self-explanatory, like setLogErrors($bool). I do see some benefit of providing some additional information in the documentation, in this instance maybe where these ...
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2answers
57 views

Frameworks/methodologies for documenting functional/use case scenarios and mapping them to code base [closed]

Is there an established framework or methodology for documenting functional or use cases and mapping them to units of code? E.g. assume you are a new developer hire assigned to work on an ...
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2answers
47 views

Multiple documentation issues in a single bug

It is clearly a bad practice to incorporate several issues in a single bug. It is not convenient, hard to maintain, difficult to keep track of what is done and what is not, etc. But does all this ...
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votes
1answer
136 views

Best practices in Application's flow diagram [closed]

I make web applications, mostly MVC, object oriented and database enabled. I always have trouble going back to project after a few months of release and work again. I don't even remember what I made ...
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1answer
40 views

Am I allowed to use text(snippets) from the iOS Developer Lib for my documentation?

At the moment, I create a Java-Wrapper for Apples *.pkpass-Files (Passbook). Since I need to parse a JSon-File, I planned to add java doc to every field, so one know what exactly this field is in the ...
0
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1answer
71 views

How to organize software document for the same application supporing both iOS and Android

I have to write software project documentation for an application which will support both iOS and Android. Each platform has its specific features and the mobile app design and requirements are almost ...
2
votes
1answer
121 views

Outline for technical software documentation

Say I have a software project for which the technical documentation should include A license document A list of used terminology An introduction about what the software does A short quick-start ...
1
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1answer
113 views

Use of # in answers/documentation when referring to methods of a class

When looking through Java documentation or answers for Stack Overflow / programming forum questions, I often see people referring to methods like String#format, Object#clone etc, rather than ...
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2answers
148 views

Documenting/defining data structures in Python

What is the preferred way to document the contents of and logic behind dynamically generated data structures in Python? E.g. a dict which contains the mapping of a string to a list of lists of ...
1
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3answers
118 views

How to consider the login function collecting requirements of an application? is it a user requirement?

I am working on an application that expected to the user logs in when the application is started (as for example it is in Skype: the user open the application and appear to him a login mask when he ...
4
votes
3answers
478 views

Is it Typical for Large Software Companies to Not Document or Refactor Code? [closed]

I have begun working at a large software company and was assigned to a project that is over a million and a half lines of code. It's part of a program suite that is sold to clients (not an in-house ...
6
votes
4answers
430 views

How to categorise information in end-user documentation?

One of the greatest piece of documentation I ever read is the TeXbook by Donald Knuth—the manual of the TeX typesetting system, and I used it in my first analysis. As far as I can tell, the type of ...
4
votes
3answers
124 views

Would adding an @beta doc-comment tag be useful?

When a function has reached the end of its life, we add a @deprecated tag into its doc-comment to notify other developers that they should stop using this function, and then a couple years later it's ...
1
vote
2answers
273 views

When to write software project documentation on code [duplicate]

I usually write my software projects in java, and I am still a bit confused as to when to document my classes, interfaces and methods. There are two ways: 1) Write documentation after declaring or ...
1
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2answers
144 views

Tender vs. Requirements vs. Solution Design

Conventionally, which of the above documents is deemed to hold the most weight when it comes to system acceptance? I recently had a conversation along these lines: It was argued that the initial ...
1
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1answer
86 views

Is there a tool to generate multi-goal procedural instructions? [closed]

As a user: When I have good instructions to follow I'm sure I could do just about anything. With poor instructions I end up frustrated, wasting time and probably giving up. The type of instruction I ...
2
votes
3answers
315 views

How to explain to non-programmer to build my Visual Studio source code in “Release” mode?

I'm writing documentation for some software that I wrote. Specifically, I'm writing a guide to installing the software. I'm delivering the source-code to my client, so I expect that they will want ...
0
votes
1answer
117 views

How do I include Implementation and Usage Documentation in one file

There are two types of documentation. One type, the Implementation Documentation, contains information about specific implementation of a construct (eg. Class, Method, etc.). It is targeted to the ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

Old programmer disappeared. About to hire another programmer. How do I approach this? [closed]

After spending over one year working on a social network project for me using WordPress and BuddyPress, my programmer has disappeared, even though he got paid every single week, for the whole period. ...
-2
votes
1answer
166 views

PDF to doxygen - how to do it? [closed]

I have a big pdf with the documentation for a project and I need to render this to doxygen (so take each function from the pdf and write it out into doxygen). Any suggestions on how to do this ...
7
votes
1answer
375 views

Creating an effective C++ library website and documentation

Creating a C++ library also means documenting it so that others can use it, and that documentation can vary dramatically in quality. How should a website for a C++ library be structured so that it ...
3
votes
1answer
106 views

Marking specific pieces of drastically changed open source code

I have taken a small chunk of open-source code, around a hundred lines, and found that for whatever reason, I have modified it so drastically that my end result has essentially no resemblance to the ...
5
votes
1answer
313 views

Which concepts are pertinent to plan a “end-user documentation” strategy?

I am writing a lot of software and I feel that writing good documentation is very difficult. Since I am not aware of any structured theory about software documentation I started to organise my ...
-1
votes
1answer
110 views

Is there any standard for design document [closed]

This question is purely from academic point of view. As part of the software engineering lab, a design document is to be created after generating the SRS. Is there any standard for creating the design ...
1
vote
3answers
227 views

How do you decide how much business requirements documentation you need and how to structure it? [closed]

In the past couple of years, I've worked on two projects. The first one, we used a very agile methodology. It was very much developer driven. As such, changes were very quick and rapid. Code quality ...
6
votes
5answers
411 views

Maintaining good form while learning new technologies

I find that I have to learn new technologies fairly regularly as a contractor in order to keep competitive. However, I also find that (not only, but especially) in these circumstances, I tend to end ...
5
votes
5answers
252 views

Hyperlinked, externalized source code documentation

Why do we still embed natural language descriptions of source code (i.e., the reason why a line of code was written) within the source code, rather than as a separate document? Given the expansive ...
0
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2answers
264 views

How to write comments to explain the “why” behind the callback function when the function and parameter names are insufficient for that?

How should I approach writing comments for callback functions? I want to explain the "why" behind the function when the function and parameter names are insufficient to explain what's going on. I ...